TCU wide receiver Taye Barber signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in undrafted free agency at the conclusion of the 2023 NFL Draft. Barber was an underrated performer for the excellent Horned Frogs. Barber recorded career highs in receptions (37), receiving yards (613), and touchdowns (5) in 2022.
Barber recently spoke exclusively with The Draft Network about how he formed a relationship with the Bucs throughout the pre-draft process, his overall skill set as a pass catcher, what his goals and aspirations are ahead of rookie mini-camp and training camp, and so much more. Barber brings speed in bunches to Tampa Bay.
JM: You recorded career highs in receptions (37), receiving yards (613), and touchdowns (5) in 2022. What clicked for you this past season?
Taye Barber: Everybody on the team came together. We worked towards one common goal. The chemistry within our locker room was amazing. Everybody did their job to the best of their ability. That chemistry helped everybody enjoy a career-best season. It wasn’t just me.
JM: What an incredible season it was for yourself and TCU. You qualified for the College Football Playoff. What will forever be your biggest takeaway from this year’s team?
Taye Barber: We developed that winning culture. That’s what helped us achieve some of our goals in 2022. I plan on bringing that winning culture with me to the next level. I’m going to carry that winning attitude throughout the rest of my career. I’m going to share that knowledge with my teammates.
JM: You signed with the Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent at the conclusion of the 2023 NFL Draft. How did the opportunity with the Bucs come about?
Taye Barber: My agent was in constant contact with them throughout the entire pre-draft process. They showed a lot of interest in me. It came down to them [Bucs] and a few other teams that wanted me to come play for them. Some of those teams just didn’t have enough picks to draft every player they wanted.
It’s a great opportunity for me to come down to Tampa Bay and prove myself at the next level.
JM: You had other offers and opportunities in undrafted free agency. Why Tampa Bay?
Taye Barber: I spent a lot of time looking at the different rosters around the league. It’s a terrific opportunity for me to learn from veteran guys like Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. I feel like I can come in and apply my skill set to the best of my abilities. I want to carve out a role for myself.
JM: Do you have a favorite route to run?
Taye Barber: I really don’t. I like running any route that gets the ball in my hands (laughs). I can run every route in the route tree. I don’t have a preference. I just love getting open and making myself a reliable target for my quarterback.
JM: You’re a big play waiting to happen. You ran a 4.45 at your Pro Day. You averaged 16.6 yards per catch two seasons in a row. Did the Bucs specifically mention speed when discussing your role?
Taye Barber: I’m really just focused on learning their playbook and different formations. I’m taking things one day at a time. Once I feel fully implemented into the offense, I can play fast and hit the ground running. It’s all about playing football at the end of the day.
JM: I’ve really appreciated your time today. In closing, what are your goals and aspirations like over these next few months as you attempt to make Tampa’s final roster?
Taye Barber: I’m going to work hard every single day. Everything else will take care of itself.
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